Understanding Revit -> Power BI

Hi all,

I’ve been exploring the data that is sent from a Revit model to Power BI.
The model is relatively small. Here’s the breakdown of qunatity of rows per speckle_type:

What I’m learning so far from this table is the following:

  • Meshes are by far the most common data type, almost half of all rows

  • This is the first time I’ve heard of SymbolElementTypes. In Power BI they actually appear as:
    (I’m still wondering what exactly this is. I suppose that digging into it further will answer that question.)

  • The absence of data related to drawings, annotations, and model warnings
    I do see that there are views. But that’s about it.

My first impression is that I can use this data for matters involving the 3D building information model, but not for things related to documentation. Am I correct?
It makes sense to me, since the building data is something that could be used in other softwares, whereas documentation data is probably not. But maybe it is there somewhere, and I just haven’t found it yet.

I’m just getting familiarized with the data, and understanding the possibilities and limitations.
Any feedback or guidance is much appreciated!

Hey @santiago.diaz.ames ,

Yes. When you send your data from Revit to Speckle, we convert it into a neutral Speckle format.

Meshes are the geometrical representation of your Revit element. As you know, different elements are represented with different concepts in Revit. Floors are actually Boundary Lines with Level and Type attached. That’s why we also store the geometrical representation of the element so first you can view it using our viewer but also, load it in other applications that don’t know about Revit.

This is Speckle’s way of storing Revit types. You can examine the structure of your data using our web app and see more details about the type (its category, etc.).

Drawings and annotations, you are right. Currently we are supporting 3D data from source applications.
For model warnings, maybe we can do something about it. What is the workflow you are interested in with model warnings and power bi?

We have a series of Revit tutorials on our YouTube channel that demonstrate the Power BI workflow. Please check them out!


Hi Bilal,

I’m getting ready to compare various Revit models via data mining.
A comparison of model health is one of the various indicators.
We already collect model health data on current projects. I was just wondering if we could also capture this via Speckle.


We are still defining the use case details, but here is a description of a plausible use case:

  • We select a number of Revit models (i.e. qty 50) which are of projects that are functionally similar. Some models may be years old, others recent.
  • After collecting their data in Power BI, we begin to look for patterns. We may already have some comparison indicators in mind, but we are also seeing if we can find data patterns that were completely unanticipated.

What is missing in the above description is the project data that is not in Revit.
For instance functional data. In some of these models, operational simulations were run (i.e. FlexSim).
We export statistical results as spreadsheets, which we will include in the Power BI exploration. But connecting that kind of data to the BIM data will not be straightforward.
We’ll probably have to add special data labels before exporting the statistical data.

For other functional indicators, I think that we could use Rhino-Inside-Revit to measure some of these. For instance spatial adjacencies and internal view access. To display this data in the Speckle 3D viewer in Power BI, I suppose we’d also need to add references to the Revit elements involved (i.e. room IDs).

In either case, we need to know what is included in the Revit data sent via Speckle, so that we can add data labels from the other data sources, to match the Revit data in Power BI.

Hey @santiago.diaz.ames ,

I’m so sorry for the late reply! It looks like your message slipped through the cracks.

Depending on how you are collecting model health, you can push it into Speckle too. Just let us know what settings you look into, we may include that in the future for this use case.

We are working on a Batch Uploader that will allow you to upload multiple projects into Speckle. I’d love to hear your feedback on that once we release it.

We recently released a tutorial on how to connect excel data with Revit. This may be useful for you. Take a look: https://youtu.be/MSZeGlOHcaE?si=cmuA_Tk9Td-KBJXs

Yes, definitely. Just so you know, you can send data from Grasshopper (Rhino) inside Revit into Speckle too. You can create Speckle objects with geometry and room data, which you can access inside Power BI.

Hi All! With the retirement of PowerBi Desktop in December 2023. Without, custom connector mez files. Will you integrate available connectors for the online version?

1 Like

It is the PowerBI Windows App that is being sunset at the end of 2023 and not PowerBI Desktop.

PowerBI Windows App is the kiosk-like reader available through the Microsoft Store.

It is indeed confusing and perhaps why it is going away.

We’ll keep and eye out during the PowerBI event coming up in November if Microsoft wants to move even more into locked data, but for now the Speckle Connector and Viewer shall continue to work and be supported.

1 Like

Thank you! For the quick reply! & for clarifying, this helps a lot!